Concert: Who Is BX

Back in February, I attended a concert at one of the major venues in Ulaanbaatar. It was hip hop artist turned R&B singer BX’s first major solo show.

BX is one of the few popular musicians who didn’t grow up in Ulaanbaatar – making that difficult switch from countryside to city. It’s not uncommon for Ulaanbaatar natives to openly state their disapproval of recent countryside migrants to the city. They are blamed for pretty much all of the city’s major problems: pollution, crime, and traffic.

Still, BX has managed to rise to the top of the Mongolian pop charts, while also earning the respect of many other Mongolian musicians. His concert last February called ‘Who is BX’, which was also the title of his latest album, was by far the biggest show he independently produced.

The show lasted for over 2 hours, and he sang and danced for about 500 fans. There were at least 10 guest artists who sang duets or rapped with BX and several dancers. I stopped counting the costume changes – maybe a dozen in total.

As one of my first big concerts in Ulaanbaatar, I was really struck by how openly everyone sang along to the songs. This is something I have since seen at every major concert I’ve attended, and I love it! Americans are always so shy or embarrassed to sing out loud. We would consider it rude for someone to belt out the hit song we came to hear the artist himself sing. But, in Mongolia, there’s a different kind of culture built up around musical participation. Everyone – men, women, children – feel free to sing loudly and confidently. It’s a sign of appreciation.

Behind me at the show were three young boys – about 12 years old. They were dressed in the cool Korean fashion that’s popular among their age group here – with big hipstery glasses. They let me record them singing along to one of BX’s hits – to which they knew all of the words.

Advertisement for the Concert:

Who is BX (Official Video)

Dougie Hiie

Haana Baina

Duunii Klip: Nara Featuring Bx, ‘Mongol Naadam’

When I’m not about to leave my apartment to catch a live performance (like now!), I’m spending a lot of time getting lost amidst a forest of Mongolian music videos on YouTube. Everyone has music videos, and as far as I can tell, it’s one of the best ways to find bands.

With that in mind, I’m going to start something I’d like to call ‘Khogjmiin Kino of the Day’*. ‘Khogjmiin’ refers to music and ‘Kino’ is the Mongolian word for film, which I’m guessing has roots in ‘cinema’.

Today’s find is musician Nara featuring rapper Bx. ‘Mongol Naadam’ refers to the annual Naadam Festival, the national sporting competition that takes place every July and showcases Mongolia’s top archers, wrestlers, and horse racers.

Note: I have updated ‘Khogjmiin Kino’ to ‘Duunii Klip’, a more common Mongolian term for music video.

*’Duunii’ is song and ‘Klip’ is clip.